Vigils have been held worldwide to honour those who lost their lives in the recent mass shootings at a gay nightclub in the United States.
In Kenya, the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community gathered at an unknown location in the capital Nairobi, joining the US to pay tribute to the Orlando victims.
They laid flowers and lit candles, but filled with more fear after the incident, especially in a country where homosexuality is still illegal.
“There’s mixed feeling really because we live in Kenya, we live in fear, we live in constant fear of being beaten in the streets, we live in fear of being thrown out of the houses, we live in fear of being killed. So it having happened in the U.S shows us that fear is actually concrete, it’s real,” said Anthony Oluoch, an activist of the LGBT movement in the country.
US – A rainbow-colored fist in honour of Orlando shootings during a vigil in Los Angeles. By Frederic J Brown #AFP pic.twitter.com/83eohOMTRa— Frédérique Geffard (@fgeffardAFP) June 14, 2016
Homosexual acts are illegal not only in Kenya but also in most African countries where the crime is even punishable by death.
During President Barack Obama’s visit to the country last year, President Uhuru Kenyatta said values which “our culture and societies do not accept” must be acknowledged.
He has however asked the public not to take matters into their own hands and harass community members, as the Constitution is clear on the protection of all.
At least 49 people were killed in the Monday incident, described as the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history.
Kenya to convert massacre forest into a memorial site
Kenya: Virtual reality used to teach students about plastic pollution
Musician Erykah Badu unveils new fashion capsule
Sudan: Patchy truce extended for five days
Fashion icon Tina Turner
Tina Turner: an extraordinary legacy